Mike Pence ‘wants to preserve the option’ of invoking the 25th amendment

As we learn more about what actually went down during the Capitol siege on the 6th, it becomes even more clear that we’re beyond lucky that there wasn’t more bloodshed and more of a horror show. Five people died in the domestic terrorist attack, including one Capitol Police officer who was reportedly beaten to death by terrorists armed with, like, fire extinguishers. Many of the terrorists were armed, they had bombs and Molotov cocktails. There was a photo of one terrorist carrying zip-tie handcuffs, and there’s much anecdotal evidence that the plan was to take hostages. Many terrorists said before and during the siege that they planned to kill Nancy Pelosi, Mike Pence and other congressmen and senators. It’s also clear that the terrorists were aided by Donald Trump and high-up officials at the Pentagon, plus senior officials within the Capitol Police. It would not surprise me if there were congressmen and senators in the Wingnut Contingent who aided the terrorist attack as well. It was truly an attempted coup d’etat.

So with all of that, you would think that at the very least, there was a consensus that Donald Trump needs to go. But since this is the worst timeline, always, senior Republicans are still playing games with armed sedition and cop-killing. Lindsay Graham said last week that sure, the terrorist attack was bad and Trump is responsible for it, but Trump should get one freebie and if he does it again, then he’ll face some consequences. That has become the talking point among that crowd now. It’s beyond infuriating. Even Mike Pence apparently believes that, and Trump literally sent terrorists to the Capitol to murder him.

Vice President Mike Pence has not ruled out an effort to invoke the 25th Amendment and wants to preserve the option in case President Donald Trump becomes more unstable, a source close to the vice president says. The source said there is some concern inside Pence’s team that there are risks to invoking the 25th Amendment or even to an impeachment process, as Trump could take some sort of rash action putting the nation at risk.

As of Saturday evening, Trump and Pence still have not spoken since the Wednesday incursion at the US Capitol that left five people dead, including a Capitol Police officer, another source told CNN. The President has also not made any public comments denouncing death threats that have been posted on social media targeting Pence.

Pence has finally “gotten a glimpse of POTUS’s vindictiveness,” one source said, using the acronym for President of the United States. Two sources familiar with the matter say Trump is angry at Pence and Pence is disappointed and saddened by Trump. Trump put Pence in an impossible position, asking him to overturn the election results during Wednesday’s joint session of Congress. When Pence explained that he could not do that and sent a letter to members of Congress that he would follow the Constitution, Trump used his Wednesday rally to egg on the crowd, telling them to march on Capitol Hill, and said of his vice president, “Mike Pence, I hope you’re gonna stand up for the good of our Constitution and for the good of our country, and if you’re not, I’m going to be very disappointed in you, I will tell you right now. I’m not hearing good stories.”

As CNN previously reported, aides to the vice president were outraged that Trump did not check in on Pence on Wednesday as he and his family were fleeing from the mob storming the Capitol.

For now, the source close to the vice president said Pence and his advisers hope to provide a bridge to the next administration and do as much as possible to assist President-elect Joe Biden’s team in preparing for dealing with the coronavirus pandemic. But, the source cautioned, it has become clear this week that it is necessary to keep the 25th Amendment option on the table based on Trump’s actions. Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said during a news conference earlier this week that he and Pelosi tried to call Pence to invoke the amendment to oust Trump from office, but they were put on hold for 25 minutes and then were told he would not come to the phone.

[From CNN]

I’ve seen some of Constitutional Law Twitter talking about how Pence and the Joint Chiefs are likely organizing a “soft 25th,” meaning they’re taking away Trump’s power and authority quietly, without having to invoke the 25th and without Trump even realizing it. Speaker Pelosi has also said and indicated that she’s been in direct contact with Cabinet officials and the Joint Chiefs and expressed her completely justified fear that Trump will try to incite another coup, and they need to step up and do more. So, with all that being said… I am not wholly dismissive of Pence’s concerns, that if he begins to make some big move on the 25th Amendment, Trump will go berserk. God, the next week and a half is going to be shambolic.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Backgrid.

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